A Sustainable Christmas

Posted by Paulina Chu on

An Upcycled Christmas

Stepping into December marks the beginning of my preparation for Christmas!  We have been using the same Christmas ornaments and decorations for years and I would really love to give a refreshed look to our home this year.  However, as I try to be more environmentally responsible in my daily life, I would also like to be more conscious of how I celebrate special occasions such as Christmas.   While looking for inspiration on Christmas decorations at home and taking stock of what we have in storage, I found out that there is actually so much we can do to make our holiday season a more sustainable one with existing materials at hand.

Baby holding an ornament

Let’s Light it up!

We renounced the use of a real Christmas tree more than 10 years ago and have been taking out our plastic version year after year.  Yes, it is made of plastic, but we intend to use it for many more years to come so I think it is better than chopping off a new tree every year.  Through the years, the only decoration we have updated is the Christmas lights.  We have switched to LED lights because they consume less energy and can last much longer, it is especially important this year with the hike in global energy prices.

Paper Rain deer Garland with lights

Not too shabby at all!

As for the tree ornaments and Christmas home decorations we have been using, I got so many wonderful ideas for repurposing some of them to give them a new look.  To add to these “refreshed” decorations, I plan to make some new ones together with my kids.  I found these salt dough ornaments super simple yet give an elegant Nordic vibe!  There are so many Christmas craft ideas that we can make and can easily involve our kids too.  I am especially inspired by this online book by Christine Leech and Emma Friedlander-Collins where you can find many eco-friendly Christmas craft projects using recycled materials, and it is free to download!  My favorite project in the book is the minimal wreath made from a springform baking pan and a cardboard box. 

Paper Balls for tree

Wrap it up

The success of a sustainable holiday season also really depends on how we manage to minimize the use of disposable gift wraps and excessive packaging.  This year, I am going to try out some reusable gift wrap ideas that are both really chic and eco-friendly!  What’s so nice about these reusable gift-wrapping methods is that you are actually giving your loved ones a second gift, the gift container itself!  I have been scavenging vintage shops and thrift shops scouting for interesting fabrics or items of clothing that I can transform with minimum effort into gift wrap materials

Fabric Gift Wraps

Of course, it takes some extra effort and commitment to have a more sustainable Christmas, but with the earth’s limited resources being depleted at such an alarming speed I do feel that we need to do everything we can to slow it down.  No matter how small our efforts seem to be, if everyone puts in their share, we can still make a difference.

Stay Sparky!

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